Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Donald L. Bailey
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Othello (Folio 1, 1623)

Actus Quartus. Scena Prima.
Enter Othello, and Iago.
Iago. Will you thinke so?
Oth. Thinke so, Iago?
Iago. What, to kisse in priuate?
Oth. An vnauthoriz'd kisse?
2375Iago. Or to be naked with her Friend in bed,
An houre, or more, not meaning any harme?
Oth. Naked in bed (Iago) and not meane harme?
It is hypocrisie against the Diuell:
They that meane vertuously, and yet do so,
2380The Diuell their vertue tempts, and they tempt Heauen.
Iago. If they do nothing, 'tis a Veniall slip:
But if I giue my wife a Handkerchiefe.
Oth. What then?
Iago. Why then 'tis hers (my Lord) and being hers,
2385She may (I thinke) bestow't on any man.
Oth. She is Protectresse of her honor too:
May she giue that?
Iago. Her honor is an Essence that's not seene,
They haue it very oft, that haue it not.
2390But for the Handkerchiefe.
Othe. By heauen, I would most gladly haue forgot it:
Thou saidst (oh, it comes ore my memorie,
As doth the Rauen o're the infectious house:
Boading to all) he had my Handkerchiefe.
2395Iago. I: what of that?
Othe. That's not so good now.
Iag. What if I had said, I had seene him do you wrong?
Or heard him say (as Knaues be such abroad,
Who hauing by their owne importunate suit,
2400Or voluntary dotage of some Mistris,
Conuinced or supply'd them, cannot chuse
But they must blab.)
Oth. Hath he said any thing?
Iago. He hath (my Lord) but be you well assur'd,
2405No more then he'le vn-sweare.
Oth. What hath he said?
Iago. Why, that he did: I know not what he did.
Othe. What? What?
Iago. Lye.
2410Oth. With her?
Iago. With her? On her: what you will.
Othe. Lye with her? lye on her? We say lye on her,
when they be-lye-her. Lye with her: that's fullsome:
Handkerchiefe: Confessions: Handkerchiefe. To con-
2415fesse, and be hang'd for his labour. First, to be hang'd,
and then to confesse: I tremble at it. Nature would not
inuest her selfe in such shadowing passion, without some
Iustruction. It is not words that shakes me thus, (pish)
Noses, Eares, and Lippes: is't possible. Confesse? Hand-
2420kerchiefe? O diuell.
Falls in a Traunce.
Iago. Worke on,
My Medicine workes. Thus credulous Fooles are caught,
And many worthy, and chast Dames euen thus,
(All guiltlesse) meete reproach: what hoa? My Lord?
2425My Lord, I say: Othello.
Enter Cassio.
How now Cassio?
Cas. What's the matter?
Iago. My Lord is falne into an Epilepsie,
2430This is his second Fit: he had one yesterday.
Cas. Rub him about the Temples.
Iago. The Lethargie must haue his quyet course:
If not, he foames at mouth: and by and by
Breakes out to sauage madnesse. Looke, he stirres:
2435Do you withdraw your selfe a little while,
He will recouer straight: when he is gone,
I would on great occasion, speake with you.
How is it Generall? Haue you not hurt your head?
Othe. Dost thou mocke me?
2440Iago. I mocke you not, by Heauen:
Would you would beare your Fortune like a Man.
Othe. A Horned man's a Monster, and a Beast.
Iago. Ther's many a Beast then in a populous Citty,
And many a ciuill Monster.
2445Othe. Did he confesse it?
Iago. Good Sir, be a man:
Thinke euery bearded fellow that's but yoak'd
May draw with you. There's Millions now aliue,
That nightly lye in those vnproper beds,
2450Which they dare sweare peculiar. Your case is better.
Oh, 'tis the spight of hell, the Fiends Arch-mock,
To lip a wanton in a secure Cowch;
And to suppose her chast. No, let me know,
And knowing what I am, I know what she shallbe.
2455Oth. Oh, thou art wise: 'tis certaine.
Iago. Stand you a while apart,
Confine your selfe but in a patient List,
Whil'st you were heere, o're-whelmed with your griefe
(A passion most resulting such a man)
2460Cassio came hither. I shifted him away,
And layd good scuses vpon your Extasie,
Bad him anon returne: and heere speake with me,
The which he promis'd. Do but encaue your selfe,
And marke the Fleeres, the Gybes, and notable Scornes
2465That dwell in euery Region of his face.
For I will make him tell the Tale anew;
Where, how, how oft, how long ago, and when
He hath, and is againe to cope your wife.
I say, but marke his gesture: marry Patience,
2470Or I shall say y'are all in all in Spleene,
And nothing of a man.
Othe. Do'st thou heare, Iago,
I will be found most cunning in my Patience:
But (do'st thou heare) most bloody.
2475Iago. That's not amisse,
But yet keepe time in all: will you withdraw?
Now will I question Cassio of Bianca,
A Huswife that by selling her desires
Buyes her selfe Bread, and Cloath. It is a Creature
2480That dotes on Cassio, (as 'tis the Strumpets plague
To be-guile many, and be be-guil'd by one)
He, when he heares of her, cannot restraine
From the excesse of Laughter. Heere he comes.
Enter Cassio.
2485As he shall smile, Othello shall go mad:
And his vnbookish Ielousie must conserue
Poore Cassio's smiles, gestures, and light behauiours
Quite in the wrong. How do you Lieutenant?
Cas. The worser, that you giue me the addition,
2490Whose want euen killes me.
Iago. Ply Desdemona well, and you are sure on't:
Now, if this Suit lay in Bianca's dowre,
How quickely should you speed?
Cas. Alas poore Caitiffe.
2495Oth. Looke how he laughes already.
Iago. I neuer knew woman loue man so.
Cas. Alas poore Rogue, I thinke indeed she loues me.
Oth. Now he denies it faintly: and laughes it out.
Iago. Do you heare Cassio?
2500Oth. Now he importunes him
To tell it o're: go too, well said, well said.
Iago. She giues it out, that you shall marry her.
Do you intend it?
Cas. Ha, ha, ha.
2505Oth. Do ye triumph, Romaine? do you triumph?
Cas. I marry. What? A customer; prythee beare
Some Charitie to my wit, do not thinke it
So vnwholesome. Ha, ha, ha.
Oth. So, so, so, so: they laugh, that winnes.
2510Iago. Why the cry goes, that you marry her.
Cas. Prythee say true.
Iago. I am a very Villaine else.
Oth. Haue you scoar'd me? Well.
Cas. This is the Monkeys owne giuing out:
2515She is perswaded I will marry her
Out of her owne loue & flattery, not out of my promise.
Oth. Iago becomes me: now he begins the story.
Cassio. She was heere euen now: she haunts me in e-
uery place. I was the other day talking on the Sea-
2520banke with certaine Venetians, and thither comes the
Bauble, and falls me thus about my neck.
Oth Crying oh deere Cassio, as it were: his iesture im-
ports it.
Cassio. So hangs, and lolls, and weepes vpon me:
2525So shakes, and pulls me. Ha, ha, ha.
Oth. Now he tells how she pluckt him to my Cham-
ber: oh, I see that nose of yours, but not that dogge, I
shall throw it to.
Cassio. Well, I must leaue her companie.
2530Iago. Before me: looke where she comes.
Enter Bianca.
Cas. 'Tis such another Fitchew: marry a perfum'd one?
What do you meane by this haunting of me?
Bian. Let the diuell, and his dam haunt you: what
2535did you meane by that same Handkerchiefe, you gaue
me euen now? I was a fine Foole to take it: I must take
out the worke? A likely piece of worke, that you should
finde it in your Chamber, and know not who left it there.
This is some Minxes token, & I must take out the worke?
2540There, giue it your Hobbey-horse, wheresoeuer you had
it, Ile take out no worke on't.
Cassio. How now, my sweete Bianca?
How now? How now?
Othe. By Heauen, that should be my Handkerchiefe.
2545Bian. If you'le come to supper to night you may, if
you will not, come when you are next prepar'd for.
Iago. After her: after her.
Cas. I must, shee'l rayle in the streets else.
Iago. Will you sup there?
2550Cassio. Yes, I intend so.
Iago. Well, I may chance to see you: for I would ve-
ry faine speake with you.
Cas. Prythee come: will you?
Iago. Go too: say no more.
2555Oth. How shall I murther him, Iago.
Iago. Did you perceiue how he laugh'd at his vice?
Oth. Oh, Iago.
Iago. And did you see the Handkerchiefe?
Oth. Was that mine?
2560Iago. Yours by this hand: and to see how he prizes
the foolish woman your wife: she gaue it him, and he
hath giu'n it his whore.
Oth. I would haue him nine yeeres a killing:
A fine woman, a faire woman, a sweete woman?
2565Iago. Nay, you must forget that.
Othello. I, let her rot and perish, and be damn'd to
night, for she shall not liue. No, my heart is turn'd to
stone: I strike it, and it hurts my hand. Oh, the world
hath not a sweeter Creature: she might lye by an Em-
2570perours side, and command him Taskes.
Iago. Nay, that's not your way.
Othe. Hang her, I do but say what she is: so delicate
with her Needle: an admirable Musitian. Oh she will
sing the Sauagenesse out of a Beare: of so high and plen-
2575teous wit, and inuention?
Iago. She's the worse for all this.
Othe. Oh, a thousand, a thousand times:
And then of so gentle a condition?
Iago. I too gentle.
2580Othe. Nay that's certaine:
But yet the pitty of it, Iago: oh Iago, the pitty of it
Iago. If you are so fond ouer her iniquitie: giue her
pattent to offend, for if it touch not you, it comes neere
2585no body.
Oth. I will chop her into Messes: Cuckold me?
Iago. Oh, 'tis foule in her.
Oth. With mine Officer?
Iago. That's fouler.
2590Othe. Get me some poyson, Iago, this night. Ile not
expostulate with her: least her body and beautie vnpro-
uide my mind againe: this night Iago.
Iago. Do it not with poyson, strangle her in her bed,
Euen the bed she hath contaminated.
2595Oth. Good, good:
The Iustice of it pleases: very good.
Iago. And for Cassio, let me be his vndertaker:
You shall heare more by midnight.
Enter Lodouico, Desdemona, and Attendants.
2600Othe. Excellent good: What Trumpet is that same?
Iago. I warrant something from Venice,
'Tis Lodouico, this, comes from the Duke.
See, your wife's with him.
Lodo. Saue you worthy Generall.
2605Othe. With all my heart Sir.
Lod. The Duke, and the Senators of Venice greet you.
Othe. I kisse the Instrument of their pleasures.
Des. And what's the newes, good cozen Lodouico?
Iago. I am very glad to see you Signior:
2610Welcome to Cyprus.
Lod. I thanke you: how do's Lieutenant Cassio?
Iago. Liues Sir,
Des. Cozen, there's falne betweene him, & my Lord,
An vnkind breach: but you shall make all well.
2615Othe. Are you sure of that?
Des. My Lord?
Othe. This faile you not to do, as you will---
Lod. He did not call: he's busie in the paper,
Is there deuision 'twixt my Lord, and Cassio?
2620Des. A most vnhappy one: I would do much
T'attone them, for the loue I beare to Cassio.
Oth. Fire, and brimestone.
Des. My Lord.
Oth. Are you wise?
2625Des. What is he angrie?
Lod. May be th Letter mou'd him.
For as I thinke, they do command him home,
Deputing Cassio in his Gouernment.
Des. Trust me, I am glad on't.
2630Othe. Indeed?
Des. My Lord?
Othe. I am glad to see you mad.
Des. Why, sweete Othello?
Othe. Diuell.
2635Des. I haue not deseru'd this.
Lod. My Lord, this would not be beleeu'd in Venice,
Though I should sweare I saw't. 'Tis very much,
Make her amends: she weepes.
Othe. Oh diuell, diuell:
2640If that the Earth could teeme with womans teares,
Each drop she falls, would proue a Crocodile:
Out of my sight.
Des. I will not stay to offend you.
Lod. Truely obedient Lady:
2645I do beseech your Lordship call her backe.
Othe. Mistris.
Des. My Lord.
Othe. What would you with her, Sir?
Lod. Who I, my Lord?
2650Othe. I, you did wish, that I would make her turne:
Sir, she can turne, and turne: and yet go on
And turne againe. And she can weepe, Sir, weepe.
And she's obedient: as you say obedient.
Very obedient: proceed you in your teares.
2655Concerning this Sir, (oh well-painted passion)
I am commanded home: get you away:
Ile send for you anon. Sir I obey the Mandate,
And will returne to Venice. Hence, auaunt:
Cassio shall haue my Place. And Sir, to night
2660I do entreat, that we may sup together.
You are welcome Sir to Cyprus.
Goates, and Monkeys.
Lod. Is this the Noble Moore, whom our full Senate
Call all in all sufficient? Is this the Nature
2665Whom Passion could not shake? Whose solid vertue
The shot of Accident, nor dart of Chance
Could neither graze, nor pierce?
Iago. He is much chang'd.
Lod. Are his wits safe? Is he not light of Braine?
2670Iago. He's that he is: I may not breath my censure.
What he might be: if what he might, he is not,
I would to heauen he were.
Lod. What? Strike his wife?
Iago. 'Faith that was not so well: yet would I knew
2675That stroke would proue the worst.
Lod. Is it his vse?
Or did the Letters, worke vpon his blood,
And new create his fault?
Iago. Alas, alas:
2680It is not honestie in me to speake
What I haue seene, and knowne. You shall obserue him,
And his owne courses will deonte him so,
That I may saue my speech: do but go after
And marke how he continues.
2685Lod. I am sorry that I am deceiu'd in him.